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Tigers roar in 48-14 victory over Deary, Idaho

by CHUCK BANDEL
Valley Press | September 14, 2022 12:00 AM

The bi-state Tigers are back in the saddle. Riding a Tiger may not be good for your health and prosperity.

The combined St. Regis-Mullan, Idaho co-op football team is making that truism a reality.

Friday night’s 48-14 dismantling of last-minute schedule filler Deary, Idaho is testimony that overcoming a disappointing start can be accomplished.

And so it is the Tigers from Montana and Idaho, who turned in another solid performance on both sides of the ball, have put the season opening loss to a dominant Superior, Montana team behind them.

The future is now and Deary was unfortunately thrust into the eye of the Tiger.

With all-everything senior quarterback Caleb Ball leading the way, St. Regis/Mullan jumped out to an early lead over the outgunned Mustangs, who stepped in when the Tigers’ scheduled opponent backed out for undisclosed reasons. By the end of the first quarter the co-op boys had proved “hold that Tiger” is a phrase that does not apply.

The Tigers scored three times in the opening quarter to take an 18-0 lead.

Behind the throwing and running of Ball and teammate John Pruitt and a rock solid defense, St. Regis-Mullan added another 22 points in the second quarter while pitching a first-half shut out of the visitors from the Moscow-Lewiston area of Idaho.

By then it was time for the young reserves to get some playing experience as the Tigers starting units played just one series at the start of the second half.

Both teams scored touchdowns in the third quarter and added two-point after touchdown conversions, bringing the score to 48-8 with one quarter to play. The Mustangs outscored the home team 6-0 in the final quarter as the hosts wrapped up another win on their bi-state “home” field in Mullan.

Ball and company turned in some sparkling offensive stats, including a 6-for-7 passing completion effort, good for 195 yards and three touchdowns by the senior quarterback. Ball added another 100 yards rushing and five tackles on defense as the Tigers rolled on.

Blake Layton, who is emerging as an outstanding player on both sides of the ball, was on the receiving end of two of Ball’s touchdown tosses, good for 100 yards in catches. Layton also had a team-high 12 tackles and had a pair of fumble recoveries for touchdowns. For extra measure he added a blocked punt.

Junior John Pruitt also had another solid game, running for a pair of scores while amassing 90 yards on the ground, and adding a third on a TD reception. On the defensive side of the ball, Pruitt recorded eight tackles, two forced fumbles and a blocked punt.

Another Tiger who had a good game was Tigers’ junior Kofi Appiah, who had 135 yards in kick returns, including a 60-yard touchdown romp.

Next up for the co-op Tigers is an Idaho rivalry game with Wallace, just a few miles down I-90 from Mullan. That game is Friday at 7 pm on the playing field at Wallace High School.

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